Daily Devotion

October 5, 2015

Stop being so critical (5)

“Who are you to judge your neighbor?”

Jas 4:12 NIV

Nobody wants to spend time with someone who monopolizes the conversation by updating them on their top-ten-people-to-criticize list. Staying home and watching old movie reruns is more appealing than going to that kind of party! It’s a hard truth to hear, but the people you need most are the ones who’ll avoid you when you become known as a faultfinder. Sometimes criticism is inadvertent; on a better day, led by God’s Spirit and focused on what’s positive, you’d never say such things. Notice what Aaron said: “We have acted foolishly” (Nu 12:11 NAS). He didn’t try to defend his position by saying, “Yes, Moses did marry the wrong person,” or “We deserve more of the limelight.” No, he realized his mistake, repented, and retreated from it. And you must do that too. Why? Because criticism blocks the flow of God’s blessing in your life! Oswald Chambers wrote, “Whenever you’re in a critical temper, it’s impossible to enter into communion with God.” Stop and ask yourself: “Is the momentary relief I get from criticizing others worth losing my sense of God’s presence?” To regain that sense of His presence you need to confess and forsake your critical attitude, then replace it with a more gracious and loving one. Today, get down on your knees and pray: “Lord, forgive me for thinking my perspective is always right. I acknowledge that as arrogance. Give me grace in dealing with others—the same grace I’ve received from You. Help me to accept our differences and not demand that everyone see things exactly as I do. Give me victory over my critical attitude. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”